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Title: A qualitative method proposal to improve environmental impact assessment

In environmental impact assessment, qualitative methods are used because they are versatile and easy to apply. This methodology is based on the evaluation of the strength of the impact by grading a series of qualitative attributes that can be manipulated by the evaluator. The results thus obtained are not objective, and all too often impacts are eliminated that should be mitigated with corrective measures. However, qualitative methodology can be improved if the calculation of Impact Importance is based on the characteristics of environmental factors and project activities instead on indicators assessed by evaluators. In this sense, this paper proposes the inclusion of the vulnerability of environmental factors and the potential environmental impact of project activities. For this purpose, the study described in this paper defined Total Impact Importance and specified a quantification procedure. The results obtained in the case study of oil drilling in Colombia reflect greater objectivity in the evaluation of impacts as well as a positive correlation between impact values, the environmental characteristics at and near the project location, and the technical characteristics of project activities. -- Highlights: • Concept of vulnerability has been used to calculate the importance impact assessment. • This paper defined Total Impact Importancemore » and specified a quantification procedure. • The method includes the characteristics of environmental and project activities. • The application has shown greater objectivity in the evaluation of impacts. • Better correlation between impact values, environment and the project has been shown.« less
Authors:
 [1] ;  [2] ;  [3] ;  [4]
  1. Institute of Environmental Studies, National University of Colombia at Bogotá (Colombia)
  2. Department of Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence, University of Granada (Spain)
  3. National University of Colombia at Bogotá, Department of Electrical Engineering and Electronics (Colombia)
  4. Department of Civil Engineering, University of Granada (Spain)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22246904
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Environmental Impact Assessment Review; Journal Volume: 43; Other Information: Copyright (c) 2013 Elsevier Science B.V., Amsterdam, The Netherlands, All rights reserved.; Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
54 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES; COLOMBIA; CORRELATIONS; DRILLING; ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT STATEMENTS; ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACTS; ENVIRONMENTAL POLICY; ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION; EVALUATION; SOCIO-ECONOMIC FACTORS; VULNERABILITY